Let me not forget my function.
Lesson 64 of A Course in Miracles owns a powerful simplicity. It is another way of articulating a familiar line from the Lord’s Prayer: “let me not wander into temptation” (W-pI.64.1:1). It’s a way of affirming that if we focus our attention exclusively on the Kingdom of Heaven, then that is what we will experience. There is nothing else we need to do, nobody else to do it and now is the only time to do it.
To the Holy Spirit, the world is a place where you learn to forgive yourself what you think of as your sins. In this perception, the physical appearance of temptation becomes the spiritual recognition of salvation (W-pI.64.2:3-4).
Our role in salvation is to practice forgiveness. To forgive is to perceive from the truth of our own holiness (rather than our separation, loneliness and fear). To see the world as forgiven is to see our own self as forgiven, for the two are not separate. This is atonement.
The world’s salvation awaits your forgiveness, because through it does the Son of God escape from all illusions, and thus from all temptation. The Son of God is you (W-pI.64.3:3-4).
When we accept atonement for ourselves – and thus perceive a forgiven world – we are making ourselves happy by “using the means by which happiness becomes inevitable” (W-pI.64.4:2). We are essentially resigning as our own teacher and accepting Jesus and the Holy Spirit as our teachers in all things. They guide us; we simply consent to be led.
At first, this is unfamiliar to us. We are used to being the boss of our own lives – and stubbornly cling to that role despite the abundant evidence that we’re not fit for the position. As we turn our lives over to God, trusting that all things will work for good, we are blessed with peace. We are blessed with happiness. This, in turn, deepens our commitment to faith, to this particular path and practice. We know it works. And we want more of that joy that comes from its working.
Indeed, this lesson nails it when it tells us to remember that the only choice available to us is whether to be happy or not (W-pI.64.4:4). How simple! And trusting that, how can any decision be difficult? We are always choosing between our happiness and what happiness is not. We could see peace instead of this! And it is our choice. And there is no thing and no body that can stop us from making that choice.
There is no other way. Therefore, every time you choose whether or not to fulfill your function, you are really choosing whether or not be be happy (W-pI.64.4:3-4).
It is so simple we think there must be something else to it. There must be some hidden meaning. There must be some mystery. Let me break out the how-to books. Let me dial up my teacher.
But stop and ask for a moment: what if it’s true? What if we spent a day choosing happiness? Could we do that? If not, why not? It would undo conflict forever. It would bless everyone we encountered. It would truly render us “the light of the world.”
All we have to do – in all things – is remember our function. We are here to forgive. If – like me – you are prone to complicating things, and so you can’t quite remember what ACIM forgiveness is, or if you are tempted to exempt some people or ideas or things from your forgiveness, then remember that it always comes down to being happy. If we are not happy, we could be. Indeed, our unhappiness is a witness to the fact that we have chosen against forgiveness. Seeing this, can we choose differently? God didn’t make God difficult. We did.
We need to resolve to do this today. We need to resolve to resign as our own teacher and let the light of Love and Forgiveness stream through us. Today is the day the Lord has made – today, the world is the Kingdom of God and nothing but the happiness of all God’s Children is a worthy goal or outcome. We are ready to be happy and to bring the world along with us in our joy. There is no more waiting. No more postponing. There is no more “yes, but . . . ”